Saratoga County

Contest creates seasonal showcases

After months of preparation, several Saratoga shops, restaurants and boutiques revealed their new wi

After months of preparation, several Saratoga shops, restaurants and boutiques revealed their new window displays July 13 in front of judges from the Saratoga 150 committee.

The Saratoga 150 committee held the window display contest to feature the 150th anniversary of horse racing in Saratoga Springs. The Broadway women’s clothing boutique Lifestyles of Saratoga took home the first-place prize. Lifestyles won a box at the track for its efforts in the contest.

“It feels great [to win the contest],” said Heidi Owen West, owner of Lifestyles of Saratoga. “We do awesome window displays all the time, but to have it all culminate in the town and the celebration and the winning of the track boxes all came together beautifully.”

The Saratoga 150 committee was very impressed with Lifestyles’ display .

“The judge from Northampton, Mass., was so impressed with the originality and creativity that she went back the next morning to confirm her findings,” said Susan Farnsworth, a media consultant for the event, in a news release.

Linda Ambrosino, owner of G. Wilikers Toys, called Lifestyles’ display “outrageously fabulous.”

West, along with manager Michele Hewlett and assistant manager Stacey Goodman, played a large role in the creation and design of the window display . The boutique’s owner credits the three H’s of Saratoga Springs as the inspiration for the display .

“The inspiration really was a combination of the three H’s — the health, history and horses of Saratoga,” West said. “That was our initial goal to get all those imparted in the window , through the floral set celebration [and] obviously the horses were in there. A lot of history is in the window .”

After winning the contest, Lifestyles has seen an uptick in traffic in the boutique.

“It’s created quite a buzz for the store. I have to say I was really surprised,” said West. “People are stopping, they’re taking pictures, they’re coming in, they’re asking about the window . It’s almost like an art installation in the window more than just a display .”

Second place was awarded to Impressions of Saratoga and third place went to G. Wilikers Toys, both on Broadway.

Impressions of Saratoga based its window display on various places at Saratoga Race Course.

“Our main window , the theme was an old tack room ” at the track and the side window was like the track office,” said Mary Ann Barker, owner of Impressions of Saratoga. “We just used a lot of the merchandise we have in the store and some of our horse equipment. There’s oats scattered all over it and vintage Saratoga souvenirs and some of the [Saratoga] 150 souvenirs.”

G. Wilikers created a display featuring a toy store-like feel at the race course.

“I think it’s a melding of the track and the 150th, with history and horses and honoring the 150 years the track has been around,” said Ambrosino. “Yet our [ window display ] has instead of real things, it has rocking horses and dolls as jockeys and that kind of thing. We did a little bit of the historical and then we kind of made it our own, because we are a toy store.”

The Saratoga 150 committee also awarded six other shops honorable mentions: Aggie Mullaney, Compliments to the Chef, Crafters Gallery, Hatsational, Paper Dolls and Silverwood.

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